I want the hot guy (girl 😜) that can hold a conversation!
Hi, my name is Sarah and I’m attracted to shinny, chromey, pretty ponies. Yes, I said that out loud. Recently, I purchased a 3 yo golden palomino warmblood gelding with 4 tall socks and a blaze named “Coastal Cruise.” Yes, I like to brush his glistening white mane and give him supplements so that he remains a sun kissed surfer boy. Hopefully this should come as a surprise to most of you since I was definitely not a girl who played with Barbies. My GI Joe’s regularly blew her up or tied her up for a ransom. ((I also had a foal born last week that I’m very excited about named Lysander. His true color identity has yet to be determined but he looks like the hot guy in the picture.)
If you can relate to all of the above, one must accept that buying a horse for it’s unique color comes with some compromises- the main one is TIME sent looking for that horse that checks ALL the boxes AND is that unique color. I strongly believe that you should not compromise on such qualities as the level of education required of the horse so that you can ride it! The odds are definitely against you that it will not be your dream horse color if you want a good match immediately. It literally took me 5 years to finally come across the right palomino horse and he is a young horse that I’m having to break and train. So please, readers, be honest with your personal riding needs first before deciding on a horse of color. Each horse deserves to be paired with the right rider!
For me personally, my horses of color fetish was discovered about 10 years ago. Originally I was not looking to buy a pinto warmblood but the movement on a 2 yo filly was so outstanding that I took the plunge into the colored world. “Semphony” (pic # 1 ) who is by Sempatico M, turned out to be one of nicest, kindest, amateur friendly horse I have ever owned to this day! She could make a beginner rider look like they had been riding for a lifetime! All 5 Sempatico’s that I have owned had very easy going temperaments, trainable minds, and all of them amateur friendly (pic # 2 ).
11 year old Area VII Young Rider McLaine Mangum also rides an amazing black and white pinto warmblood mare by Sempatico M (pic # 3). Stefanie, her mother, purchased the mare “Merry Mischief” aka Merry not based on her color but because she liked the look of the horse and the previous trainer boasted about the easy temperament and unflappable jumping style. McLaine has brought the mare along herself, both never evented and is moving up to Training level, again at just 11!!!! years of age!! McLaine says “Merry always tries her heart out, gives me her best every time!” This pair is definitely one to watch for in Area VII!
Getting into the colored world by accident was also the experience for small breeder Melissa Gorsuch who recently had a pinto warmblood foal born out of her pinto warmblood mare by pinto warmblood stallion Art Deco and Weltmeyer / Graf Gotthard lines. The sire to the foal is the Advanced event stallion Sea Accounts. Melissa says that when she first saw her mare Calle, she “wasn’t thrilled with the the color. But bought her for her temperament and confirmation. The color grew on me.” She is thrilled to have a healthy, happy baby which looks to be a carbon copy of her mother (pic # 4 )!
Trainer Michele Pestl who has talent spotted multiple 4 star event horses (Mai Baum, Landioso, and Airlington) when they were just young horses in Germany has recently been making a splash! Spotify, Major Splash of Class, Berkeley, and Partly Cloudy are all examples of sport horse of color that she has been training. Michele says that Partly Cloudy (a grey and white pinto pic # 5) is “the most natural X-C horse I’ve ever come across” and decided to breed one of their mares to the same sire, pinto Oldenburg stallion Palladio. It is no surprise that his foals are good jumpers since Palladio’s sire is the infamous Holsteiner stallion Caletto I.
Berkeley, a buckskin, is another young warmblood prospect being trained by Michelle (pic # 6 ). He is by the palomino warmblood stallion Blonder Hans. Michelle says that “he will be a total amateur horse but may have more aptitude for upper levels.” Emily Pestl, Berkely’s rider, says she “gets more compliments on him than any other baby she has ridden!” His buttermilk buckskin color makes him a real stand out!
Another unique color gaining traction in eventing is the Appaloosa Sporthorse which comes in a variety of patterns such as blanket, leopard, and snow cap This is often a cross between Thoroghbred, Trakehner, and other warmblood breeds with the Appaloosa Breed. Breeder Stephanie Caston Auck of Squirrel Hollow Farm in Iowa has produced several Appaloosa Sporthorses. Likely her most notable is a mare named “The Flying Iris” (pic #7) by the Appaloosa stallion Invitational.
Stephanie grew up in Texas mostly around western horses, rodeo, and backyard riding. She fell in love with an Appaloosa gelding one summer at camp. She says, “he trail rode and jumped and did pretty much anything I asked.” Life took a few more turns and she found herself eventing, riding warmbloods, and starting young horses but always a love for the Appaloosa. She decided to cross the warmbloods and Thoroughbreds she had been riding with the beloved Appaloosa. I asked Stephanie to tell me in a nutshell what she likes about her crosses and she says they are “Easy, jumping, honest as the day is long. A little saucy. Heart and grit. The things you can’t train into them. But very trainable and smart at the same time.” Sounds like a perfect cross for eventing!
So if you are shopping for your next horse and considering something a little splashy or chromey, be ready for it to take TIME to locate a horse that checks all the boxes. Hopefully some of the information above about breeding / bloodlines will steer you to a suitable horse. Stay true to yourself about what your needs truly are in your next riding partner. Recognize that it is already a difficult task without considering color, one that is extremely time consuming for a trainer to locate and match students to horses. Many horses of color are solids citizens that are more than equip to make winning event horses. I am fortunate to have several other horses of my own so that I could take the time to find the right colored horse for myself. Inversely, if you happen to come across a horse that checks all the boxes and is a different, unique color, be open to it! Several of the love stories above, including my own, happened because we stumbled into them!